Making EV easy: Everything an electric car owner needs to know and have
Our Electric Vehicle (EV) experts at Nathaniel Cars have been sharing their tips and advice in a whole host of blogs.
We’ve already suggested the best electric cars to buy and explored what you should look for before you buy an electric car, but this edition of “Making EV easy” will look at everything you need to know and have as an electric car owner.
Know all the facts about charging your EV
You can find out more about how to charge an electric car in another of our “Making EV easy” blogs. But the main things to remember are:
- if possible, a home charger is the best option
- you can charge at public charge points
- you won’t need to recharge your EV every night
- average charge times are around an hour to get to 80% charge
It’s also worth noting that the network of electric vehicle charging points in the UK is growing, with The Department for Transport aiming for a target of 300,000 public chargers by 2030.
Plus, new charging solutions are being introduced like the portable electric-car charger that’s set to launch in 2023.
You may have some concerns about charging or driving an electric car in the rain, but there’s no need to worry.
Electric car charge points must have a minimum waterproofing rating of IP44, which means they should be protected from water splashes from any angle. This is more than enough for rainy conditions
So, you can charge in the rain, take an electric car through a car wash and even drive along a flooded road without any issues (so long as you stick to the car’s wading depth, which you’ll find in its manual).
Know how to get the best range out of your EV
Some new electric car owners suffer from so-called “range anxiety. It’s the fear that your EV won’t complete longer journeys.
Most electric cars today have a range of 100-150 miles before the battery runs flat.
Half of journeys are between one and five miles, just 38% are for five to 25 miles and only 2% are for 50 miles and more. So, the average distance is more than enough for an electric car before it will need charging.
Ranges will differ from car to car, but you can read more in our blog, “How far can you can drive an electric car?”.
As the network of charging points grows, range anxiety will become a thing of the past. Especially if you’re armed with the latest information about where they are. We’ll explain how you can do that in a moment.
Be aware that you can’t tow an electric car
While certain electric cars can tow trailers and caravans, electric cars can’t be towed.
This is because of their regenerative braking system. This system takes the energy from braking and decelerating and feeds it back into the battery.
Since electric cars and hybrids don’t have clutches, they can’t be detached from this system.
This means that if you try to tow an electric or hybrid car when the car isn’t on, the regenerative braking system could generate a lot of unexpected heat and energy, which could damage the car.
Roadside breakdown services can get around this issue by loading the car onto a trailer or flat-bed truck, which means the wheels won’t be touching the ground.
Get the best apps and websites for electric car owners
Finally, we’ve put together a list of the most helpful apps and websites for an EV owner to keep on their smartphone.
This was an essential app for helping our very own Electric Ed travel from South Wales to Southampton in an electric car.
With more than 95% of the UK’s charge points on display, Zap-Map will help you find your nearest EV charging point.
It can even show you which ones are available for charging. And you can pay through the app when using participating networks.
PlugShare is the worldwide version of Zap-Map.
You can use it to plan trips at home or abroad, adding stops and editing the journey as you go.
You can even send the directions to your phone to use offline.
Pod Point is one of the UK’s largest charging networks.
With the Pod Point app, you can find your nearest Pod Point charger, plug in and start charging without having to use a credit or debit card at the charging point.
As the name suggests, EV Hotels shows a worldwide network of hotels with charging points. So, you can plan a journey or holiday where you need an overnight stay.
The app shows different types of chargers, and you can filter out the charging points that aren’t suitable for your EV.
Need To Charge
It can be frustrating when you drive to a charging point, and it’s already being used.
Need To Charge allows you to enter the number plate of the car that’s being charged. If the owner has signed up, you can send them a message to ask when the charging point will be free. And best of all, it’s free.
Everything an electric car owner could want… and more
Armed with this information, as a new EV owner, you can be safe in the knowledge that you’ve got everything you need to make driving your electric car a safe and comfortable experience.
If you have any other questions about electric cars, come and speak to the plug-in car experts at Nathaniel Cars.
You can fill in the “Ask our EV Experts” form, or pop into our Cardiff and Bridgend showrooms to see our range of electric cars for yourself.